Taking time to read the important lyrics to ‘The Revolution will Not Be Televised’

If you haven’t recently, take a look the lyrics from the late poet and musician Gil Scott-Heron’s radical, 1971 classic ‘The Revolution Will Not Be Televised’. Also, catch a quick interview with him from 2010. Worth a walk through history and to hear his words directly. View it here.

More than anything, the last line speaks so loudly to what is happening NOW. I find it sad that it is taking so long for real change and I hope that we are much closer to ending racism, injustice, all the hate and senseless pain and killing. Check out the lyrics…

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THE REVOLUTION WILL NOT BE TELEVISED (to view the song)

You will not be able to stay home, brother

You will not be able to plug in, turn on and cop out

You will not be able to lose yourself on skag and 

skip out for beer during commercials, because

The revolution will not be televised

The revolution will not be televised

The revolution will not be brought to you by Xerox 

in four parts without commercial interruptions

The revolution will not show you pictures of Nixon blowing a bugle

And leading a charge by John Mitchell, General Abrams, and Spiro Agnew

To eat hog maws confiscated from a Harlem sanctuary

The revolution will not be televised

The revolution will not be brought to you by the Schaefer Award Theatre

And will not star Natalie Woods and Steve McQueen or Bullwinkle and Julia

The revolution will not give your mouth sex appeal

The revolution will not get rid of the nubs

The revolution will not make you look five pounds thinner, because

The revolution will not be televised, brother

There will be no pictures of you and Willie Mae pushing that shopping cart 

down the block on the dead run

Or trying to slide that color television into a stolen ambulance

NBC will not be able predict the winner at 8:32 on report from 29 districts

The revolution will not be televised

There will be no pictures of pigs shooting down brothers on the instant replay

There will be no pictures of pigs shooting down brothers on the instant replay

There will be no pictures of Whitney Young being run out of Harlem on a rail 

with a brand new process

There will be no slow motion or still lifes of Roy Wilkins

Strolling through Watts in a red, black, and green liberation jumpsuit 

that he has been saving for just the proper occasion

Green Acres, Beverly Hillbillies, and Hooterville Junction will 

no longer be so damn relevant

And women will not care if Dick finally got down with

Jane on Search for Tomorrow

Because Black people will be in the street looking for a brighter day

The revolution will not be televised

There will be no highlights on the eleven o’clock news and 

no pictures of hairy armed women liberationists and Jackie Onassis blowing her nose

The theme song will not be written by Jim Webb or Francis Scott Keys

Nor sung by Glen Campbell, Tom Jones, Johnny Cash, Engelbert Humperdinck, 

or The Rare Earth

The revolution will not be televised

The revolution will not be right back after a message about a white tornado, 

white lightning, or white people

You will not have to worry about a dove in your bedroom, the tiger in your tank, 

or the giant in your toilet bowl

The revolution will not go better with Coke

The revolution will not fight germs that may cause bad breath

The revolution will put you in the driver’s seat

The revolution will not be televised

Will not be televised

Will not be televised

Will not be televised

The revolution will be no re-run, brothers

The revolution will be live

Wow, nearly 50 years ago this song was written. Thank you for your words Gil Scott-Heron. So much history and foresight in these lyrics.

Stay safe, keep protesting and demanding change and justice. And as November is rapidly approaching, we all have to VOTE!

Sandra

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